The last week saw a wave of intrusions, attacks and property destruction against Palestinian olive farmers from illegal Israeli settlers.
On October 9 a group of Israeli settlers attacked Palestinians while they harvested olives trees in the area south of Nablus between Talfit and Qaryout villages.
Ghassan Daghlas, a Palestinian official who monitors Israel’s illegal activities said more than 150 settlers attacked Palestinians and forced them from the fields.
In a separate incident, also on October 9, a group of illegal settlers invaded agricultural lands in Bruqin village, west of Salfit.
Almost 40 olive and almond trees owned by a Palestinian farmers were uprooted in the attack.
Bashir Salama, head of Bruqin local council said the trees were owned by local farmer Jamal Othman Salama.
Jamal Salama said that in 2017 settlers also uprooted 40 of his olive tree saplings.
In another instance, 40 trees were cut down by Israeli settlers on October 7 in the town of Turmusaya, north of Ramallah.
Farmers reported the trees destroyed early in the morning, close to the illegal Israeli settlement of ‘Adi Aad.’
A fourth attack within the week was reported on October 5, when settlers were filmed stealing olives from Palestinian farms in Burin Village, in the Nablus area.
In the footage, two men are seen harvesting olives from groves in an area that leaves them inaccessible to Palestinian owners without permission from Israeli authorities.
The farms are within Area C of the West Bank which, under the 1993 Oslo Peace Accords, means they are in complete Israeli military and administrative control.
Palestinians in this area have their right to movement obstructed due to illegal settlements, settlement roads and military training exercises.
A Palestinian farmer, speaking anonymously, told MEMO that occupation forces only allowed him three to four days to harvest his crop.
A farmer prefers to work hard and all at once, it’s better for the trees, if they give me a day a week, that means they are giving the rest of the week to the settlers. the farmer said.
Palestinian farmers are granted only four days to tend to their orchids and harvest their crops, while settlers are able to access this land freely.
Israeli authorities have a list of landowners and allow only close family members to accompany them on the land.
Access to the land has only been granted on Saturdays for a period of four weeks this year.
Olives account for 25% percent of the west banks economy according to a report by ESDC.
Some 100,000 Palestinian families rely on the nearly 11 million olive trees in occupied Palestine for their livelihood.
Attacks and violations against Palestinians often escalate during the olive harvest season.
Israeli settlers have already destroyed around 5000 trees, mainly olive trees, this year.
Israel’s settlements in the occupied West Bank are illegal under International Law.
Source: Palestine Monitor